Greedy Goblin

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Leveling inscription

Inscription is the main goldmaking factory of most AH-players. It's extremely versatile, supporting practically all playstyles. It can be fire and forget sure 2K+/hour-semi-AFK tool of those who play little and you can squeeze 20K+/week if you play monopolist or 1c undercutter and camp the AH 24/7.

However everyone needs to start somewhere. Leveling inscription can be quite annoying. You have to craft glyphs or scrolls from inks made of low-level herbs. Good luck finding "Fadeleaf, Goldthorn, Khadgar's Whisker, or Wintersbite"! They run for 3-5G if there are any at all. If you passed that, the "Firebloom, Purple Lotus, Arthas' Tears, Sungrass, Blindweed, Ghost Mushroom, or Gromsblood" patch will surely finish you!

This happened with one of the members of the Undergeared guild, which is beyond 100 accounts by the way, and have more and more people close to lvl 80 and the blue raids. Since I forgot how was it to level, I helped him for free, but there is definitely a business opportunity here.

The trick is that the Northrend herbs are much cheaper than the mentioned and always available on the AH. And we have our beloved Jessica to get low level inks. Too bad that her wares are unavailable for low level scribes as they cannot create ink of the sea.

Here I came: as a high level scribe, I could easily get inks for the guildy, and he managed to pull his slvl 200 inscription to 350 in less then an hour, for minimal investment.

You can get to slvl 75 with recipes using peacebloom, silverleaf and earthroot which are usually available for coppers. You can mill Northrend herbs at slvl 350 making your own inks. You have to craft 275 low-level items, needing about 300-330 ink of the sea (due to 2-ink recipes and yellow recipes not giving skillup). Since sea is below 2G in material cost (+1G for your milling time), inscription is the cheapest-to-level profession if you have access to sea ink.

So for leveling people: check inks on the AH, but have no hopes. If there are any, they are shamelessly overpriced, targeted to guys who buy 1 ink to spam trade to find crafter. To have 300-330 inks, you'd better buy 64 stacks of simple Northrend herbs and spam trade "LF scribe to mill my herbs and make inks (64 stacks). Paying 100G for your work". With the inks in your bag you go to Jessica and buy your own.

If you are a high level scribe, you can list full stack of seas for 60G/stack. A leveling scribe will gladly buy them.

Oh, and don't forget to check the prices of glyphs before milling. Better get a few skillpoints using a green recipe that sells for 8G than using an orange, 2-inks recipe crafting 80s glyphs.


Anonymous said...

I'm having exactly that problem, I'm stuck somewhere around 230 already because herbs are just not there to buy. If they are, I have to pay 50 gold for a stack of firebloom, witch I find pretty high. I'll try the trick with exchaning the inks, hope that it works. Thanks for the tip!

Roger said...

I actually farmed the herbs myself back when I was leveling inscription, because I didn't even think about buying them from Jess.
Not very goblinish I know, but it gave me a sense of accomplishment that "buying my way up" just doesn't give me.
Strange how those ape subroutines have a way of making me enjoy the game more, even through the occasional grind.

Anonymous said...

These herbs are easily farmable actually I really don't understand why there are so few of these herbs in AH, and why they are so expensive. Appears that lately Herb exchanging or if you got Herbalism, that those two methods are only way to level at that inscription level, unless you're lucky and someone has posted nice ammounts of these herbs. Thanks anyway, I was thinking about leveling my rogues inscription up a bit, And I'll surely be stuck at that point too :P Thanks

Anonymous said...

Happy to see an informative and helpful post on here Gevlon, it has been a while. If you have any more like this up your sleeve, please think about posting them in the future...

Another point to mention, which many scribes overlook I think, is to sell the low level inks needed for levelling inscription. I make a habit of buying extra inks from Jessica whenever I am doing a batch of glyphs... just mouse over the inks to see the Auctioneer tooltip, if they are selling for more than 2-3g I buy 2 stacks. I usually have the market on these and let them go for 5g each in single stacks.

Mittchel said...

If you're lazy to find an miller, you're able to buy ink of the sea's from AH and trade those.
On my server they go 44g a stack.

LadyGaga said...

But is it still worth leveling inscription. my second alt is stuck at lv 148 and even the glyphs that I can produce up to that level are not best sellers =/

Halmotors said...

I'm running into the exact same issue. I don't have a herbalist to farm these herbs myself (since that's not the Goblin Way). I've already 'hired' a few herbalists to sell me their wares at discount prices from the AH, but so far neither of them have come through with anything. Goldthorn, Fadeleaf, Khadgar's Whisker, and Wintersbite all go for around 50g a stack on Moon Guard-US. If I'd known the herb market was that rich, I'd have leveled herbalism alongside one of my characters.

This character will also be an alchemist, so it'll be REAL fun getting the herbs to level that, too...

Chris said...

@ LadyGaga,

Unfortunately the leveling glyphs are not big money makers, since everyone can make them. The true money is made with the glyphs you learn from Major and Minor Inscription research, since not everyone bothers to learn all of them. Hence, less competition and higher prices.

Anonymous said...

After a server transfer I had the same issue with inscription leveling and I realized at 100 skill that this wouldn't have gone smoothly without an herbalist.. so I bought a ton of northrend herbs and paid 300g to the only willing inscriptioner I found and powerleveled my way to 420 and something in 2 hours with less than 2k gold expense.

I thought about the same business opportunity you posted, but didn't test it out of lazyness.. it might be a good alternative to the ruthless glyph market on my new server.

PS you might want to try out the new glypher module that comes with auctioneer, it's more user friendly than the one kevmar wrote

sam said...

you don't find them on the AH because they don't sell regularly. YOu can sell mining mats or cloth all day long but herbs sit for long periods. They only sell when you find someone leveling inscriptons. The higher level herbs sell all the time and are a more dependable income flow.

Thats why you don't see them on the AH very often. Most people that want inscription already have an alt that can do it.

Goratrix said...

The problem I have been having is finishing getting all the recipes! Research (major and minor) everyday still takes forever to get all the recipes. Book of Glyph Mastery is generally expensive (20+G) on my server and there are a ton of recipes you need to get with them.

I agree with the other poster, that those are where you make the best money, not everyone has done the research / books, so there are fewer sellers of those glyphs.

Anonymous said...

Great post on helping people level Inscription, however, you lost me here:

"If you are a high level scribe, you can list full stack of seas for 60G/stack. A leveling scribe will gladly buy them."

As a high level scribe, why would I want to help the competition? Other scribes on my server should level the hard way, whine and cry, convince themselves that herbs cost too much and glyphs never sell over 1g, and get out of my market. They shouldn't get close-to-cost inks from me that conveniently convert into whatever they need.

Anonymous said...

@ Anonymous

"As a high level scribe, why would I want to help the competition? Other scribes on my server should level the hard way, whine and cry, convince themselves that herbs cost too much and glyphs never sell over 1g, and get out of my market. They shouldn't get close-to-cost inks from me that conveniently convert into whatever they need."

Exactly. This is the same reason I would never mill northrend herbs for a levelling scribe regardless of what they are paying. That scribe you help out today, may turn out to be the camping monopolist of point in encouraging others into one of your markets. Don't forget, even if the scribe doesn't sell on the AH...every new scribe fully levelled and researched is probably giving glyphs for free to guildies and friends, that still equals less sales for you.

Gevlon said...

@last 2 anonymouses: don't be silly. You can't stop any serious competitor from leveling inscription up. The guy who you "help" is just another guy who just want a profession bonuses and will only supply friends.

On the top of that, he can just farm the herbs himself. He will level up anyway and all you lose is profit. If he stops leveling, he wouldn't sell a single glyph anyway.

Anonymous said...

"The guy who you "help" is just another guy who just want a profession bonuses and will only supply friends."

His friends are my customers.

"He will level up anyway and all you lose is profit."

If you call 20g from 20 ink "profit", I'll continue making 20g from 1 ink by selling glyphs, thanks.

Lee Quillen said...

"If you call 20g from 20 ink "profit", I'll continue making 20g from 1 ink by selling glyphs, thanks."

And that will vary wildly server to server. It is absolutely impossible to make 20 gold from a single ink on my server (for instance). I know, because I have every item an ink is used for covered. At this point, with the amount of competition, single ink glyph prices are down to 3-5 gold each daily with vellums and Runescrolls having even smaller margins. Even at that ridiculously low price, it is still very profitable for certain players even if I wouldn't touch it if I was spending more time on it or milling my own herbs.

So, low profits on one server or item doesn't mean they are doing something wrong. Personally, I have helped 3 guild inscriptionists level and they are now full time millers for me. They are happy as casual player with what they consider crazy money for making inks for herbs... and I spend zero time milling and am more than happy with profits from glyphs. Everyone wins.

Finding someone who likes to craft but hates (or is uncomfortable with) the Auction Hall can be a godsend. heck, I gave them all the option of keeping the Snowfall Inks and they all chose gold because they don't want to deal with the AH.

People are funny, and can work for you a great deal once you understand their motivations even if they are competing with the same craft. We have a 24/7 glyph camper on our server who seems to gather all his own herbs. plays 18 or so hours a day spending half of it hitting Scholazar Basin for herbs, then posting everything 1 or 2 at a time. He ndercuts everyone...even those selling at 35 silver. So, I buy all his 35 silver glyphs and vendor them...and he heads back out to Scholazar Basin. That's 10 or 20 less he is able to place under glyphs in the 7 gold range as well as a ton of eternal life I know he will buy from me to turn all that Snowfall into cards. By my calcs (which he is obviously not figuring out) he is losing money on these cards due to inflated Eternal Life costs and not even beginning to get the clue that he is selling them at a loss.

What does all that above mean? It means I took 4 glyph competitors (including one camp the AH type), and turned them into an easy 30 minutes a day for cheap Inks of the Sea and sure Sales on flipping Eternal Life's for good profit. Good profit for me is probably lower than what you would consider good, but considering I have been told it's impossible to compete with crafted items on the AH with limited playing time... I'm pretty happy with it.

If I posted glyphs at 20 gold, we'd all sell less and he'd have zero trouble keeping me constantly undercut such that I never sold a thing. That's from first hand experience when I first entered the market and had to work out how I would sell anything since all glyphs were quickly undercut with 4-10 within 15 minutes of being posted.Now it's all he can do to try and put one or two below everything I post.

And no, not listing server or name because the last thing I want him doing is reading this and knowing hat I am doing. A smart man, or an idiot who could read, would quickly shut me out knowing I can only tool with the AH 30-45 minutes a day :P

Breevok said...

Got to agree with Gevlon on this one - if someone is leveling any profession, they arent going to stop because you won't mill some herbs for them. They will make it with or without you - because if you won't take their 100g, there will be another 20 scribes who will.

Remember that the majority of scribes aren't selling glyphs on the AH - they just want to get the shoulder enchant. As already pointed out - the profit in glyphs doesn't come from the trainer taught glyphs - its from the ones learnt from research and from books - and that's where your average player won't invest the time nor gold.

So take the gold now - because you have have no idea what's just around the corner - perhaps Gevlon's going to transfer to your server and then you are really in trouble

Manbearlion US-Coilfang said...

I actually find that while inscription does give results in moneymaking, the time it takes to relist and recreate glyphs is a much greater hassle then any other profession. Yes if you have the right addons most of it is AFK time, but that AFK time is still time that you could have spent doing something else on your computer (During milling, I have an autoclicker running for me- but I can't minimize to browse the internet because the autoclicker would stop milling). You have to list 1500+ glyphs on the AH every two days if you're making most glyphs and put enough of each kind on the AH to not sell out before next session, and that's ~2 hours every two days.
Although I do still use inscription to sell the various highest selling glyphs, I'm generally starting to move on to crafting the high-gold items in Jewelcrafting and Blacksmithing on my main that have a high mat cost but even higher profit.
Overall I would use Inscription for some extra money when you really need it and have some time to spend (for instance, if you're trying to stock up on primordial saronites) but stick to high selling items from other professions to avoid the hassle of /reloadui 10 times.

Anonymous said...

"So take the gold now - because you have have no idea what's just around the corner -perhaps Gevlon's going to transfer to your server and then you are really in trouble"

Every posting method and pricing scheme can be countered in some way(his included), this really shouldn't be a concern unless you like letting the fear of the unknown determine your playstyle. As for what IS around the corner, react and adjust properly, evolve and continue making your gold.

Anonymous said...

As an inscriptionist, I would take their money for sure. Why? Simple logic. They are either wanna be goblins or they are just leveling it for the shoulder enchant. The first category will probably find a way anyway, the second is harmless for me.
Even if they are goblins, you are in a better position because you already know witch glyphs to craft and (if you are smart) have done more research then the guy who's leveling it. So you have the better starting position to beat the guy, witch will probably cause him to quit the glyph market in 5 or 6 weeks if you are extremely unlucky.

Gibbiex said...

It strongly depends on the server and your competition> Even one AH camper will destroy the market. On one server I am on, business is good and I sell 4k a week or so. On the other server maybe 1k a week . This with everything maxed and 95% of recipes known both sides. Identical posting schedule, etc.

I think Gev's strategy of deep undercuts which thereby destroys the competition is the secret for his success. On most servers there are several glyph makers and if your gyphs last an hour its considered good. For me, inscription is a huge time investment. Decent reward, but its not 1k/hour. Maybe 500g per hour or lower. I spend probably 2-3 hours every day, maybe even 4 hours, posting and reposting. (I post 2 glyphs every 24 hours). I'm about to give it up since it's such a time sink.